Autumn 1989, shortly after the fall of the Berlin wall. A Berlin-based youth orchestra – the „Berlin Sibelius Orchestra“ whose members have come mainly from the west – is joined by newcomers form the East. They decide to celebrate this new beginning with a concert performance of Dvorak’s „From the New World“ in the Berlin Philharmonie.
A camera follows them, capturing intimate music-living moments from the rehearsals to the concerts, when the young musicians express concentration, joy, commitment, dreaminess but also sorrow and impatience.
Entertaining in content, the program offers also an interesting form. The total absence of the spoken word requires the story to be told exclusively by the relationship of music and image. Music takes on the role of the narrator, and the video turns into a kind of silent opera.
The symbiosis between narration and visualized music, or between image and sound is made naturally by the fact that the „actors“ are studying exactly the music the viewer hears which is the whole 1st mvt of the New World Symphony. Even though the actions captured by the camera hardly ever coincide with what we hear (Asynchrony), they are nevertheless directly influenced by the mood of the same music. An interesting way, how to get inside the mood and the psychology of an orchestra.
„A little Symphonic Story told by Antonin Dvorak,” observes young musicians, their love of music, the work they are putting into an interpretation. It also tries to explore how this „Symphony from the New World“ has influenced their behavior during this achievement.
Anton Dvorak, From the New world symphony. Nr. 9 First movement.
Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Director, Klaus Tennstedt